Studio Review: Sproing Fitness

Last night I had the opportunity to try a new studio in Chicago: Sproing Fitness.

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Sproing?

Yeah, you read that right.

When I told people where I was heading to sweat today, multiple people asked me what Sproing was. And to that, all I could do was shrug my shoulders and say “I think it’s something like running on a trampoline?” It’s a bit of a mystery, because unlike other workouts that you can easily categorize (bikram yoga, barre, reformer pilates, etc.), this one is pretty outside the box. Unlike other studios, where you know exactly what you’re getting into, Sproing is one of those workouts you have to see to believe.

I walked through the front door and was immediately greeted by a clean, bright orange and white studio filled with other Chicago bloggers. I was immediately greeted by co-founder Paul and Matt, who were very down-to-earth, friendly, and excited to explain just what Sproing is all about.

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I urge you to go to their website to really understand the workout, but I’ll sum it up for you here: it’s essentially a low impact workout that mimics a treadmill run + strength training, without all that unhealthy pounding on your joints that many of us experience because we don’t have the right running form. It feels like running on the beach! The workout helps promote the right running form and, in my opinion, would be the perfect supplement to any race training.

Since I’m a visual learner (and I’m sure many of you all are too) I found this pretty hilarious video of Sproing on the Steve Harvey show.

I started out by getting hooked up to a heart rate monitor. Now, I’m a bad runner and have never worn a heart rate monitor before. I’m “that person” who, when I first got my Garmin, just charged that bad boy up and left all the other techie stuff in the box (heart rate monitor included — whoops). I didn’t think I’d like the feeling of running with a device strapped to my chest, and have always been worried about it moving up and down while I move.

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I hooked it up right under my sports bra and, surprise surprise, it didn’t move an inch during my workout. Plus I know that including a heart rate monitor is a great indicator of your intensity when running — they hold you accountable to push yourself. Numbers don’t lie, after all.

Soon we all gathered in the studio and were faced with a room full of treadmill-looking machines, chandeliers, and a giant timer. It was really a cool facility: half studio, half nightclub.

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I will say it was pretty intimidating — the machines are like cushiony treadmills with straps and hooks all over, and you have to strap yourself in before you start. It was pretty funny trying to figure it out but the staff at Sproing was great about helping step-by-step. I really hope they give that much attention to all newbies, because I definitely don’t think I would’ve figured it out if there wasn’t a staff member specifically telling me what to hook up where. Luckily Erin was there to figure it out with me.

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Before we knew it the workout began! We started with 15 minutes of explanations/warm ups and then dove right into a seriously intense 30 minute HIIT sequence of running (leaning forward), running (leaning back), inchworms, pushups, bicep curls, jumping jacks, squat jumps, etc. etc. We were instructed to follow our progress on the board and try to stay in the Orange Zone as much as possible (85% max heart rate or higher). I loved having a “scoreboard” like this! I’m terribly competitive so anytime I saw myself fall below the orange zone and into the green, I gave myself a mental push and kicked it into high gear.

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This workout was tough stuff. We only had ten second breaks between rounds, but if you’ve ever done a HIIT workout before, you know that ten seconds really means five. But at the end of it all Erin and I absolutely crushed it in the Orange Zone!

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Three cheers for being 5’10 aka burning the most calories aka getting to eat the most chocolate chips when I got home!

Because we spent more than 20 minutes in the Orange Zone throughout our workout, Paul took our photo (with a Polaroid camera no less) to put on their #dripwall. So basically we’re Chicago celebrities now. NBD.

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#polaroidofapolaroid

We will forever live on in Sproing infamy.

I stayed afterwards to chat more with Paul and Matt and really grew to respect the brand. Paul is the former CEO of Bally Total Fitness and the other co-founder is a very accomplished engineer, so between the two of them they have the passion and the brains to really see this thing through. Paul put it very well: Sproing is unlike any other workout in Chicago. There will always be cycling, yoga and barre studios, but this is truly a revolutionary idea that I think should become more well-known in this city, especially one that is so running-focused.

I know that when I begin training for the Chicago marathon soon, I’ll consider making Sproing a part of my fitness routine. I would definitely put my trust in this machine to improve my form, my time, and my overall cardiovascular fitness. If nothing else, I can definitely see myself replacing tempo runs or other short runs with this workout. I’m much more likely to push myself when I’m doing it in a group setting.

For all my Chicago readers (and anyone visiting), Sproing offers a free first week so take advantage and see what it’s all about!

Questions:

  • Have you ever heard of Sproing before?
  • What’s the most unique workout you’ve heard of lately?
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36 comments

  1. Wow that’s definitely something different! But I can see its merits if you were, for example, marathon training.
    The UK is pretty far behind when it comes to new workout methods – spin is still new and I haven’t seen barre outside of London! CrossFit is still pretty unheard of!

    1. Yeah I think the first class has to be viewed more as a foundational class, and then from there you can push yourself even more. It was crazy complicated but as long as you stayed on your toes, you could totally figure it out. And it was fun!

  2. I went to a Sproing class when I had my month of ClassPass, and I really enjoyed it! I was bummed the blogger class was on Tuesday, since I have my dance classes on Tuesday. Otherwise I definitely would’ve gone! Sproing (like, you know, literally any sort of studio fitness), is waaaaaaaay outside my budget, but I’m glad I got to experience it once, and I’m sure doing it routinely can have really great benefits.

  3. This looks so fun! I was dying laughing at that Steve Harvey video, I hope you were bustin’ a move like that in class. If this type of thing comes to Tampa I am totally signing up.

    P.S. Your abs are on point… teach me your ways….. 🙂

  4. Wow, this is fascinating. The concept is just like Orangetheory Fitness in terms of the goal of getting to the orange heart rate zone. But the exercise…..interesting. I would definitely like to check this out in person someday. Is it a franchise?

  5. That sounds like SO MUCH FUN! The most unique workout I heard of was the “Stripper Pole” workout. Long story short, my boss asked me if I did it…and I gave her a blank stare. Then she explained that her daughter has a stripper pole in her living room and uses it to workout. I kind of want to try it!
    Anything with a trampoline sounds fun!

  6. I have never heard of Sproing before but it sounds (and looks!) so interesting. I’ll have to look it up and see if there’s anything around here. It looks like a fun and challenging activity 🙂

  7. This is so fun! I haven’t heard of Sproing… but looks like you had a blast!! Isn’t that great how group workouts/ classes are becoming fun events?! It’s like, working out doesn’t have to be a bad time! This looks great!

  8. Sounds like an interesting workout! I love doing out of the box workouts like this. They’re usually just fun and challenging.

    By the way, I totally had the same fear about wearing the chest strap before I got it. I get irked by clothes/things falling down when I’m exercising, but the truth is, usually I don’t even notice the chest strap on. Sometimes hours after my workout, I realize that I forgot to take it off!

  9. I have wanted to try Sproing, but Pittsburgh is so behind the fitness times! Another new trend I have been seeing is Aqua Spin…that looks crazy fun! I want to try it but I can assure you we won’t get one nearby us for years…maybe I’ll be able to travel to one soon!

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